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It all came together for Spain in their last outing against Slovakia, as they ran out 5-0 victors. Goals from Aymeric Laporte, Pablo Sarabia and Ferran Torres helped them on their way and having found the net just once from their previous two matches, they now look a danger going forward.
Croatia were given a must-win task last time out as they faced Scotland in their final group game at Hampden Park. A Luka Modric masterclass was exactly what his side needed, he hit a sumptuous first-time shot after the hour mark to put them ahead, while he didn’t stop there, providing the crucial cross to Ivan Persic who guided the ball into back of the net to secure a 3-1 win.
They’ll need to improve on their performances if they’re to advance to the quarters though, and when you consider they’ve gone just W3-D3-L6 from their last 12 internationals now, beating the Scots, Malta and Cyprus, while their stalemates came against Turkey, Armenia and the Czech Republic, Luis Enrique’s men deserve the favouritism.
Spain To Beat Croatia
Spain may have made life difficult for themselves in the group stages, but they’ve now won 15 of their 26 outings since the start of qualification for this tournament at the beginning of 2019.
Their sole defeat over that period came against Ukraine in Kyiv and although they’ll be playing outside of their home country for the first time so far this competition, that could see them flourish with less pressure from the fans.
Spain 1 Goal Winning Margin
Zlatko Dalic’s men have lost each of their last seven meetings with any of the current top 12 sides in the FIFA World Rankings, as they lost by a single strike in five and both teams scored in as many too.
That is an abysmal record and one that certainly holds some weight when playing the best sides in the business, and the sixth best team in the world should have enough about them to reach the quarters.
La Roja haven’t lost any of their last six matches against the current top 21 in the rankings, thrashing Germany 6-0 over that period.
Although we don’t think they’ll put in another performance like that, they have to be the strong favourites for us and we’ll get behind them considering.